Even if I had said I will do Bird week the week the structure deck release, too bad, I never realize it's Spring Break when I said that.
Anyway, welcome to Bird week. As like other theme week, I would try my best to write (few) article(s) discussing flavor, effect, decks, or anything about the theme. As usual, we will kick off the whole theme week with my not-so-flavorful flavor article.
As usual, I will use my favorite dictionary.com and Wikipedia to get the "definition" of Bird.
Any of the class Aves of warm-blooded, egg-laying, feathered vertebrates with forelimbs modified to form wings.
Feed on nectar, plants, seeds, insects, rodents, fish, carrion, or other birds
... Common characteristics of birds include a bony beak with no teeth, the laying of hard-shelled eggs, flight ("the wing"), and a light but strong skeleton. ...
Well, as usual, the "definitions" itself is not so helpful. But at the end, anything that have flight, feathered, warm-blooded, have the bird shape should be bird.
It does make sense that most of the birds in this game looks the same: unlike Insects or Mammals, Bird itself do not have much different shape or characteristics. Of course, there're common birds/symbols like Eagle (Eagle Eye, Bald Eagle), Phoenix (Nepthyus), Owl, ducks, etc.
There's of course...some "off definition". I cannot go into each one of them, but this are some good examples:
Mirage (e. Fiend Reflection #2): Due to old art, maybe, but I had never seen a Bird with...bat wing...
Tyhone: Again, maybe old art, but it fits the "Winged Beast" more than being a "Bird" (OK, one can argue "鳥獸" make sense as "Bird-Beast" --> "Winged Beast", but Bird is those primative animals, and normal Birds do not attack, monsters birds does)
Dark Bat: OK, maybe I should stop packing on the Bats...but ain't they Zombies?
Wyvern (e. Winged Dragon, GoF #2): Definition of "Wyvern" - "...DRAGON having wings...", English name: "Winged Dragon". Winged Beast/Bird???
So, after picking out old arts that are wrong and sampling over what the Bird should looks like (it's common sense), let's look at what they actually DO.
We would look at it from main-type wise. Birds, except 2 out of 47 of them, are either Wind (majority) or Fire (Firebird and like). When thinking about Wind main-type, one can think of what Winds do: basically blow stuff around and round. Blowing stuff around means the whole Wind type should be back-court (Magic/Trap zone) related. Indeed, they are. First, looking from two Magic cards with things related to Wind (Storm and Cyclone), both destroy M/Ts.
Another points that Bird can related to is from point of evoltuions. From this, we can see relations between other "primative" types (i.e. Beast) and relations of Birds and Dinosaurs (Archaeopteryx).
Here's the classifications of effects of the 21 effect Birds...
1. Magic/Trap related: This type of effect related on destroying/returning Magic/Trap cards from field to somewhere else. Cards like [Phoenix God of Nepthyus] destroy M/T, while [Joe] and [Tornado Bird] return M/Ts. At last, both [Sonic Shooter] and [Divine Bird Simurgh], the new cards from the Structure, related their effect to Magic/Traps.
2. Lifepoint/Attack power related: Birds are great, in addition, boosting themselves. Birds can be Stealth and attack opponent from nowhere ([Stealth Bird]...duh), help themselves ([Undead Firebird], [Sacred Crane]), or purely boost their attack ([Firebird], [Harpy Lady 1]). The last two can be make sense with "feeding on other Birds" part.
3. Other: Of course, not all cards have to be fit under flavor. Sometimes they're JUST being Bird because of their art.
As for the second part, none of the Birds have any effects (yet) related to it. But some Beast/Beast-Warriors in 307 have effects related to Birds, while the Dinos one can be seen in the GX anime.
In the end, with the small number of Birds exists in this game, there's always lack of stuff that make sense. One of them that I can think of is that since Birds can fly, they should have advantages on the Earth Beasts. YET, Konami does not care if they're Birds or they're Warriors, they give them the same effect. This makes Bird (and many other stuff) lost their special-less.
This should do it for my introductory. Look for more stuff during this two weeks (since I delayed the start of this theme week).
P.S. Please provide me feedbacks on my flavor articles. I'm still in learning process on what exactly people like to know about so I would not feel I'm writing common senses and nonsenses the whole way.
I liked the article, i think that you can talk some more about bird support
I hope someday GX show a Bird Duelist , because kenzan maked the first step in releasing support for forgotten types
anyway...will we someday see more sea-serpents? because we are getting more and more machines @@
P.D: Sorry english isn't my native language
I second the desire for a Bird Duelist, but I have a bad feeling that Mai is the closest thing we'll ever get to that. Konami seems to believe that Harpy Lady is the end-all, be-all of Birds. Harpy Lady can do anything and everything in their eyes...except stay on the Field. Really, as far as straight Bird support is concerned, Enraged Minotaur helps with Piercing, and I wouldn't necessarily consider Dark Manticore as support, but you CAN Discard a Bird to revive it. Likewise, Roc of the Shrouded Vale is support, but not for its own subtype. Outside of the Harpy Lady, Birds don't seem to support themselves, instead supporting other sub-types.
Some of my favorite combos involve Mode-Shift (not surprising). Winged Saint Falcos, Spirit of the Winds - Garuda, and Stealth Bird all benefit from a well-played Mode-Shift. With Garuda, it's really just a matter of Stall, since you're usually going to shift the Monster back to ATK at their End Phase. With Falcos, it's a good way to screw-up your Opponent's speed, as they're taking a turn to get back a card that's apparently weaker than what you have out. Likewise, Charge is good to set and chain in defense of attackers, since Birds have a lower limit on their ATK strength than most subtypes. You may even way to use Garuda as a free summons to Trib-up to Jiyo or combine with a Guiding Hand of Nephthys for bring a Lv8 Monster out of nowhere in a single turn. Sadly, that's about all I can say for the Effect Birds, as there are a surprising few (do we even have 10? @_@), but the general concept with the Bird subtype is that they possess a lower stat composition. This is compensated, however, by the fact that most Birds have balanced ATK/DEF, making them more flexible for switches in strategy.
Alas, the ony TRUE Bird support (aside from Harpy Lady) that I can think of is God Bird Attack, which will be extremely useful...if the theme ever spreads its wings. Until then, I guess I'll rely on Nephthys as my dueling crutch. She's been a good partner for my Deck.
Edit: I almost forgot to mention that there are a vast number of mediocre Birds that are Non-Effect. It took work, but I was able to build a Deck from this concept, and use Non-Effect support such as Dark Assembly Line, Dust Barrier, and Curse of Anubis to create a Deck sort of like Judai's Season 1 E-Hero, only with Birds. It's about the only way I've been able to make consistent use of God Bird Attack. When you have to use Non-Effect Monsters to make a Deck work, you know it's undersupported (or E-Hero) -_-
What i think is that konami as totally forgot about other thips that aren't Machine or warriors, in every set whe have like 10 to 15 warriors or machines, and it starts to get more and more boring
I hope, that whit the new struckture we can see mre birds , harpies aren't all in the bird world -3-
GX may have a bird duelist, you know they haved a insect duelist and they released one of her cards, why no expect some luck?
Thanks for the reply. Don't worry, I will talk about the Bird supports in my next article (which would be "teching around Birds")
In addition, Eagle, you just gave me more ideas on what I will write on my NEXT article.
I would move to see harpie decks make a strong come back. Birds or winged Beast have made little improvements because of the forced drive for warriors/machines. This has only forced duelist in me area to generate versions of there friends decks that copied someone else who copied someone else. After a few matches you will star to fill like to are psychic.
I believe that Konami and Upper deck should to a serious over view of what they have out on the market and do a one time tune-up for the ideas that have been blanketed on the area. Monsters are only as good as the support available for them. Support relies on monsters that will be effected by them. The newer sets are showing more promise in the fact that they are balancing themselves out to a degree. The older sets at one time where even better at doing this. Somehow the game has a marketing tool made for someone else leaving the duelist that helped the made the game the level it is lacking.
Eventually, one of two things will happen. One, the game will become to outrageous that it forces a mass drop in sales because many duelist will just walk away. Or, Konami and upper deck will remove their thumbs from there butts allowing air to flow again and make cards and rules that will turn Yugioh around for the better.